Patient Comments: Rheumatoid Arthritis - Experience

Please describe your experience with rheumatoid arthritis.

Comment from: Leslie, 35-44 Female (Caregiver) Published: September 13

I am a Nurse Practitioner who frequently sees patients with autoimmune type diseases, and although too little is known about the causes of many of these diseases, some patients respond to diet, such as the Macrobiotic diet, which helps reduce the body's immune response. In the case of RA, it is an overactive and abnormal immune response. I'm not saying it's a cure all and it's for everyone, but if it works for you, it sure would be worth the try!

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Comment from: Cynthia, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 03

I was diagnosed over 20 years ago with fibromyalgia because my RA was negative, but doctors frequently rechecked my blood work due to ongoing pain. My current PCP has been suspicious for a few years that I had sarong RA, and after my divorce last year, I had a serious flare, hands severely swollen and painful, pretty much useless, that's when I finally got the diagnosis. Plaquenil seemed a miracle drug, until I got hit again with a bad flare, now I just started Methotrexate. Very frustrating, I have had pain and fatigue my whole life, but now I feel like I can't even function without my hands. It's the loss of control that I hate.

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Comment from: loracnalitud, 55-64 Female Published: August 20

I began having pain in the middle finger of my right hand about seven months ago. This has developed rapidly. That finger causes the most pain and is crooked at the top knuckle. The pain is severe toward the evening, throughout the night and in the early morning. Pain is severe in both hands, wrists, toes and ankles in the evening.

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Comment from: Julia H, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: August 07

I am a 59 year-old woman with my two grandchildren living with me. They are 6 1/2, and 8 years old. I think I am having a flare-up right now, I started on Saturday evening feeling a little nauseous, and achy, and bone-tired, and with a blotchy rash on my upper arms. Then towards Sunday evening, I started getting terribly achy joints, (especially my wrists, hands and elbows), and a mild fever. The fevers have continued at a varied level of 99.4 - 102 degrees. They only abate when I take Ibuprofen. When I am developing the fever again, my hands and feet are COLD AS ICE!!! The rash has worsened with the days. My biggest concern and why I have not gone to the rheumatologist is that I don't want to take drugs that reduce my immunity while I have these two little ones living with me. With all the illnesses they bring home I will constantly be sick! That is my worry!

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Comment from: iram riaz, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: August 07

I am a patient of RA i suffered in this disease when i was 15 years old. I have gone through total hip replacement of both hip joints and my hands are deformed, but i am trying hard to fight with disease i am doing a little better and getting positions in my class sooner i shall be judge and show the world i am not defeated with disease.

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Comment from: vrm123, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 07

I was first told I had RA at the age of 8 years old. It was in every joint in my body. The pain in my legs was so severe I could not walk. My legs and wrists were beginning to bend out of shape so I had specially made "splints" (just like a half of a cast) that I wore every night to bed. They kept my legs and wrists straight. I was also put on medications and got addicted to pain killers. I missed a lot of time in school due to hospital visits. The RA was attacking my kidneys, bladderer, and my eyes. I also had a strict exercise program I had to do twice a day. My Mom, (God bless her) would bend my legs over and over while I screamed in pain. I now know it hurt her a lot more than it hurt me, but at 8 years old all I wanted was for her to stop. It was difficult having RA at such a young age. I missed a lot of trick or treats, birthdays celebrated in hospital, but worse was nobody would take me for a sleep over. They were scared something would happen on their watch and they didn't want the responsibility. At the age of 16 the RA went into remission and everything was great. No pain, no meds, no splints, YEAH!!! Then around the age of 30 I started to notice small changes. I was dropping things, tripping over my own two feet. My joints were sore and swollen and I knew it was back. The RA grew worse and worse and today I am 50 years old and in severe joint pain and I walk with 2 canes but I know a wheelchair is in the not so distance future. I won't let RA depress me. I refuse to give in to it. So for as long as my two, very sore, legs are still under me I will continue to live my life to as close to normal as possible. Thank you for listening.

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Patient Comments

Viewers share their comments

Rheumatoid Arthritis - Early Symptoms Question: What were your symptoms at the onset of your rheumatoid arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Treatments Question: What treatments have been effective for your rheumatoid arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Prognosis Question: What's the prognosis for your rheumatoid arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Diet Question: Discuss the diet or other lifestyle changes you've made to relieve symptoms of RA.
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Diagnosis Question: What led to your rheumatoid arthritis diagnosis?

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